Research

Collecting <em>Halopteris novae-zelandiae</em>.

Collecting Halopteris novae-zelandiae from a typical low light rocky reef in Otago, New Zealand (18/12/2006).

By training I am an algal physiologist and subtidal field ecologist. I also have experience with hydrodynamic modelling, database design and I am proficient with R, PHP and core web development languages. Alongside some great collaborators, I am involved with ecological research in a range of different systems.

Research Interests

  • Photosynthetic and nutrient ecophysiology of macroalgae
  • Numerical descriptions of seaweed in changing coastal seas
  • Coupled hydrodynamic-ecological models as predictive tools in subtidal benthic ecology
  • Statistical analysis and visualisation of ecological datasets

Current Research / Role

Scientific support for Tangata Tiaki/Kaitiaki and CPA Managers

Currently New Zealand has a significant community investment in locally focused environmental management groups, including management of fisheries via Customary Protection Areas (CPAs). To gain support for local management decisions based on mātauranga (traditional ecological knowledge), local and customary management groups need support from scientists. Although the New Zealand CPA network covers an area larger than the mainland New Zealand Marine Protected Area network, very few research programmes are specifically designed to support them.

The first phase of this project ran from April 2014 to June 2016, under the title Interweaving mātauranga and science through online tools. It was funded by the Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment and Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu through the Vision Mātauranga Capability Funding Scheme. It supported capability building and baseline assessments within individual CPA management teams and the communities they support. It was the precursor to my current role, where I am now part of a team alongside other Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund placement fellows and full-time Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu staff. We have a long term (5 - 10 year) vision to deliver high quality science and baseline monitoring support to Tangata Tiaki/Kaitiaki and CPA managers throughout the Ngāi Tahu Takiwā.

For more information, please visit the Takiwā 3.0 website or contact me directly

Past Projects

The ecological impact of large-scale arrays of marine renewable energy converters (2013 - 2014)

This EPSRC funded project in collaboration with Imperial College London and CEFAS will use a suite of modelling tools (both commercially available and open-source software) to assess the potential changes in ecosystem function as a result of the installation of large arrays of wave and tidal energy converters.

Assessing the impact of sewage outfalls on macroalgae using coupled hydrodynamic and ecological models (2011 - 2013)

My first postdoctoral research project, based at Queens University Belfast (Northern Ireland). We developed and applied coupled hydrodynamic-ecological simulation models and use a combination of subtidal field work and boat-based surveys to examine the impact of treated wastewater discharge on subtidal macroalgae. More info…

The ecophysiology of the deep-water macroalga Anotrichium crinitum (Kützing) Baldock (2006 - 2010)

My PhD thesis research at the University of Otago, supervised by Catriona Hurd and Christopher Hepburn. This project focussed on the light and nitrogen ecophysiology of a filamentous red seaweed often found near the maximum depth limit of macroalgal growth. More info…

Other projects

Local Knowledge project (2009 - 2010)

A database and spatial visualisation project which aims to collate information about marine research conducted around New Zealand. The objective of this project was to connect local people with local (marine) research conducted in their area. More info…

Collecting <em>Karitane and the Huriawa Peninsula.

Karitane and the Huriawa Peninsula (field site during my PhD), on a particularly calm autumn day (30/04/2010).